Hear Thee, Hear Thee

A few nights ago, I collapsed into bed at the end of a three day tourist marathon. I was exhausted. And possibly… maybe… a tiny bit irritable.

I felt the black hand of death my husband’s warm touch on my back.

“I love you,” he hissed.

“Have you lost your fucking mind?”

I bolted up right in bed and launched into a tirade. About how tired I was. About how hard this was getting. About how it just wasn’t fair and he didn’t understand and how many times had he been to the airport in the last two weeks because I was about to make trip number six and did he really think that going about his merry fucking way all damn day without hardly a word at me while I tried to stay afloat was considered good foreplay?!? Seriously?!?!

I rolled over and ripped the covers back to my side of the bed, snapping my eyes shut. I heard him whisper something that sounded like an apology before I fell asleep.

The next night, at a surprisingly early hour, he walked in the door with a 12 pack of Diet Coke.

And 12 of my most favorite flowers in the whole world.


And I remembered how damned good it felt to be heard.

Amy wrote a post recently about what it sounds like to not be heard. It was disheartening to read how many people could relate to what she said in her comments. Disheartening, because it reminded me how desperately we all need that – and how rare it is to truly get it.

How, more often it seems, we’re told “it’s no big deal”. Or met with a blank expression when we express ourselves. Or – worst of all – never even asked how we’re doing. I hear over and over again from people (women especially) who feel like they’re going through their lives completely unnoticed, unappreciated, unheard.

That’s my recurring nightmare.

I wake up in a cold sweat, screaming and crying, but no sound coming from my lips. I spend hours in my sleep desperately trying to get the people around me to hear me. To care. To notice.

And when they do, I can feel the weight lifted. A box of soda and a few long stemmed roses did more to revitalize me than a three day vacation ever could. Because it meant that he had heard. He had listened. And it mattered.

What do you need someone to hear?

Whatever it is, you can say it here. Right here.

And I promise no one will tell you it’s no big deal.

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  1. avitable says:

    I am fortunate that I have never felt like I wasn’t being heard. I don’t know how I’d handle the alternative.

  2. how awesome of jared! way to go!! damn, that man is bucking for hubby of the year.

    hello haha narf’s last blog post..Accused

  3. p.s. my dogs listen. and don’t repeat. i’m good on the need to vent. but i seriously appreciate the offer. thanks.

    hello haha narf’s last blog post..Accused

  4. Amy says:

    Like a weight has been lifted… yeah, that’s exactly what it feels like.

    :heartbeat: :heartbeat:

    Amy’s last blog post..It Doesn’t Mean You’re Not A Dick

  5. godsgal72 says:

    When you struggle, He listens. When you yearn, God responds. When you question, He hears. He has been there. He knows how you feel. :heartbeat:

  6. Dan says:

    Good man Jared!

    Dan’s last blog post..Squeak squeak squeak

  7. Penelope says:

    Woah get out of my head would you?!
    I spent most of yesterday feeling like I wasn’t being heard, still don’t feel I am, but maybe this is just how it’s going to be :wtf:
    GORGEOUS flowers! :clap:

    Penelope’s last blog post..I’m excellent…it’s official!

  8. turnbaby says:

    Good for you for speaking up about your stress and good for Jared for hearing and responding in a way you would appreciate.

    Roses are my favorite flower as well.

    turnbaby’s last blog post..Half Nekkid Thursday Edition No. 2

  9. Ann says:

    Completely unnoticed, unappreciated, unheard.
    That is my life.

  10. Mr. Fabulous says:

    Jared keeps raising the bar for the rest of us. I am going to have to have a talk with him. :poke:

    Mr. Fabulous’s last blog post..I violate Norman Rockwell for the very last time…

  11. I feel *relatively* heard. Is that a strange thing to say? I mean, Maggie and I get caught up in our own shit, and sometimes I feel like I’m 7th on the list in a family of 5, but if I do MY part and actually raise that issue when it comes up (which isn’t, like, frequently), we’re able to change course. Same goes for her, I think. So that’s cool.


    Rich | Championable’s last blog post..Shocked! Shocked, I am!

  12. This post made me cry. Thanks a lot :rolleyes:

    “Completely unnoticed, unappreciated, unheard.”

    Yeah. That’s why I blog. So I have proof that I actually said something to the universe.

    Not Fainthearted’s last blog post..Keeping my mind off it

  13. Just Me says:

    Does Jared have a brother?

  14. Janelle says:

    I need sleep…AND a vacation AND a million dollars :)

  15. Girl, have these people moved in with you???

    How much longer is the “visitor” thing going to go?

    The Absurdist’s last blog post..Mini-blog: Apology

  16. Anonymous says:

    I frequently feel as if I am going through my life unnoticed, unappreciated, and unheard. Now I have a lump in my throat.

  17. Poppy says:

    I used to not be heard. I am always heard now, and reassured when I need to be.

    I feel censored in something I want to say about the Jared thing. I think I’ll email you.

  18. Miss Britt says:

    hello haha narf: it’s been a good year for him.

    Amy: :heartbeat: :kiss:

    godsgal72: yeah, that’s true. But sometimes it’s still hard to be ignored by the people we share the Earth with, you know?

    Dan: today anyway. :wink:

    Penelope: “but maybe this is just how it’s going to be”

    Fuck that. That shouldn’t be how “it’s going to be” for ANYONE.

    turnbaby: yellow ones in particular are my soft spot.

    Ann: :cry: that’s just not right.

    Mr. Fab: didn’t you win Husband of The Year last year? I’m pretty sure I got an invitation to that ceremony.

    Rich: no, it’s not a strange thing to say. And at the risk of sounding sexist here, I think it’s more common for women to feel ignored.

    Not Fainthearted: yeah, me too a lot of times. If it’s up there in print, I know it was said. When someone else comments, I know it was heard.

    Please don’t cry. No one cries alone with me. :cry:

    Just Me: two actually – one is single.

    Janelle: take a nap sweetie. Sleep is good for the soul.

    The Absurdist: 12 more days.

    Anonymous: ugh, I’m sorry.

    Poppy: remind me to tell you about the shirt I want to have made for you.

  19. Honeybell says:

    Wow–can I come yell at your husband?

    I spent 2 hours last night deciding if it was worth it marrying a man with 2 children (=not being heard in triplicate) This post came at a perfect time.

    Honeybell’s last blog post..Warning: Vulgar Language *or* Nefarious Honeybell

  20. Miss Britt says:

    Holy shit.

    Did anyone else notice the “relevant posts” this post links to?


    Talk about not being heard…

    Except after I wrote this, the emails from you guys were overwhelming. And helped pull me back into the light.

    If I haven’t said it lately – thank you. All of you. For hearing ME.

  21. Miss Britt says:

    Honeybell: shit. Did I just break up an engagement?

  22. Poppy says:

    OMG… Britt! What you did up there? That was hilarious. Hopefully he thinks so too, and now he can never say that again. :wink:

  23. Honeybell says:

    No Worries!! I like to consider these things seven years after the fact.

    Honeybell’s last blog post..Warning: Vulgar Language *or* Nefarious Honeybell

  24. Yeah, I felt like you do yesterday.

    Hubby still hasn’t apologized…though he didn’t try to coerce me into sex. He just wouldn’t make a decision about dinner….so I flipped out about his inability to make even the tiniest of decisions without a full-blown debate or suffering the consequences of him being unhappy with my choice when he wouldn’t fucking decide.

    But I did get dinner from Wendy’s out of the arguement…I did not however, get the sleep I wanted. Mine always pulls crap when I am sleep deprived.

    I doubt I’ll get flowers and diet coke though…you lucky gal!

    Cissa Fireheart’s last blog post..And I feel like I’ve gotta travel on….

  25. Hilly says:

    Damn, I need almost everything I say to be heard by a certain person. I swear I am never listened to and when I am briefly? Nothing gets remembered. I am sure you know who but I can’t say it here!

    Yay you for voicing your needs!

    Hilly’s last blog post..Go Go Gadget Giggle Power…

  26. The flowers and pop were a really good way for him to show he does listen (sometimes!!)!

    I actually wish I was able to be there/listen for my boyfriend more. He is always there for me, listens (at least humors me, even through tears) and I don’t think I do enough for him because he eventually always gets what I am trying to say… I guess I have to work on being less selfish… Shhhh… Don’t tell anyone..

    themuttprincess’s last blog post..LOL cats

  27. Treasia says:

    What a sweet surprise from your husband. More sweet to know he had heard and listened to you.

    My only gripe today is yesterday was my birthday and all I got from hubby was a text message of well wishes. Maybe he needs lessons from your hubby.

    Treasia’s last blog post..My Birthday to Me

  28. Lynda says:

    How ironic that this post came at a time where I finally got up the nerve, after a month, talked to my husband about a difficult subject (to the point of telling him I would even consider separating from him over this issue) and actually felt like I was being heard without stupid jokes or excuses.

    Just us, listening to each other and talking to each other (and hopefully hearing each other).

    Lynda’s last blog post..They Paved Paradise, and Put In A Parking Lot….

  29. Finn says:

    What don’t I need to be heard about? The people in my life simply hear what they want to hear, not what I’m saying.

  30. Congrats to both you and your husband! You for having the balls to communicate that you were upset and him for realizing that you were upset and not just blowing it off. Well played to all!

    Captain Steve’s last blog post..Damned if you do and damned if you don’t

  31. sizzle says:

    Because I can’t say it elsewhere or to her:

    You are always checked out- whether you are drinking or not- and I am not sure how much longer I can tolerate this one-sided friendship. What will it take for you to wake up, face your issues and finally, love yourself?!

    sizzle’s last blog post..This & That

  32. sometimes a little tantrum goes a long way.

    he wins the prize this week.

    the planet of janet’s last blog post..Yes, Regis, this IS my final answer …

  33. mtngray says:

    My husband is always more thoughtful after I’ve had a major meltdown and quite possibly thrown things at him. He needs the wakeup call every once in a while as well.

    mtngray’s last blog post..Sick Day

  34. Kimberly says:

    I know that weight. I have been being heard at home more as well and it is both surprising and wonderful. As usual though, I keep waiting for it to end or the other shoe to drop. Fucking pessimist.

    Kimberly’s last blog post..Evil in the Refrigerator

  35. Jen says:

    This is something I desperately want to say to someone but can’t/won’t:

    She is not your friend anymore. You treated her like crap so don’t expect to be the first one she calls when something good happens. Yes you two may still be on speaking terms, but she has a new and better friend, one that actually cares about her so bugger off!

    Jen’s last blog post..Thankful Thursday

  36. Selma says:

    Bravo to Jared for hearing you. Sometimes I just want my stresses and strains to be acknowledged too. When your partner doesn’t hear you, you begin to wonder if you really matter. This was heartwarming.

    Selma’s last blog post..The Evening Tide

  37. Beautifully written post!

    Deb on the Rocks’s last blog post..Fwed: Fwd: Fwd: Top Ten Reasons Butts are Like Diamonds

  38. Bec says:

    I blog to be heard, but those I need to be heard by don’t read the blog. I’m considering leaving print outs in obvious places. But that would just be odd.

    You are a genius.

    Bec’s last blog post..Overprotective

  39. Good for you, Britt, for telling him and good for you Jared for listening.

    I used to scream but all I heard back was how hard it is for him, too. I just finally gave up. And? After 13 years of marriage? Still never buys me my favorite flowers.


    Coal Miner’s Granddaughter’s last blog post..Georgia Advertising On a Budget

  40. Stephanie says:

    Powerful post, Britt. This comment:

    “Completely unnoticed, unappreciated, unheard.”

    That is the entire reason I have my blog..that no one in my family knows about. It seems no one in the “real world” hears me, or seems me, or acknowledges me, unless I can provide a service or ear or whatever for them. I totally understand.

    Your roses are very pretty, nice job to Jared. I’m glad you were heard, Britt. :heartbeat:

    Stephanie’s last blog post..Stolen Meme

  41. Stephanie says:

    That should read “See me” not “seem me”.

    Damn vodka.

    Stephanie’s last blog post..Stolen Meme

  42. Nothing makes me crazier than feeling ignored. It’s what sends me screaming through my house at my kids and my husband. It happens more often than it should–if I’d ignored my mother–? Dude. I can’t even finish that sentence.

    Feeling like I’m heard and they care what it is I feel or I’m saying means more than anything else. It’s also part of the reason I blog. Everyone needs validation.

    Sleeping Mommy’s last blog post..Kid’s meals: 99 cents

  43. Tori says:

    it’s not that they don’t listen… it’s that they just want to be so agreeable that I can’t get a response that doesn’t feel like smoke being blown up my ass… I’m a bit fragile right now, all things considered, and I think all my friends are afraid if they disagree they’ll be the one that pushes me over the edge… when all I really need right now is someone to question me so I can be reassured I’m doing the right thing…

    my god that made no sense…

  44. Miss Britt says:

    Poppy: :evil: I’m glad you noticed.

    (So did he. :wink:)

    Honeybell: whew!

    avitable: have you seen Dooce’s twitter today?

    Cissa Fireheart: oh we’ve had that fight. “Oh, sure – let ME make all the decisions so YOU don’t have any responsibility! I don’t care if it’s just DINNER – it’s a POINT I’m making here!” :lol:

    Hilly: :heartbeat: yes, I know who – and I have this desire to kick someone hard in the crotch.

    Maybe you should try that?

    themuttprincess: awww, you’re a lucky girl. No, lucky isn’t the right word. Because you definitely DESERVE that.

    Treasia: the answer to that is to buy yourself something. Expensive.

    Lynda: :clap: good for you for speaking up!!

    Finn: arggh, that makes me so mad that people do that to each other.

    Captain Steve: heh, yeah, that’s probably less balls on my part and more knee jerk reaction combined with no filter.

    sizzle: :heartbeat: I hope that person wakes up.

    the planet of janet: I’m a fan of the tantrum, myself.

    mtngray: don’t they all? :wink:

    Kimberly: dud! Down with the pessimism!!

    Jen: oooooh, I know a friend of MINE who would say that to an old friend of mine.

    And she’d be right.

    Selma: it’s amazing the power our partners have to define us. Good, bad, or otherwise.

    Deb on the Rocks: really? Hm. Thank you!

    Bec: I think that’s why I started sending people I know to my blog.

    CMG: really?!?!?!? God, that surprises me.

    No wonder you’re so fucking tired lately.

    Want me and the Ty-man to have a chat? :eyebrow:

    Stephanie: I think that’s why a lot of us blog. Me included.

    Sleeping Mommy: that’s me too – and crazy is the right word for what it does to me.

    Tori: sure it did. You can tell when you’re being handled with white gloves – and it kind of makes you question yourself too. Like, fuck, AM I that fragile? Should I be allowed to make my own decisions right now?!?

    If someone had the guts to talk to you like a grown up, you’d know they trusted your ability to take it.

    I get that.

  45. Poppy says:

    avitable: have you seen Dooce’s twitter today?


  46. Heather says:

    “The reason you think I’m such a bitch is because you completely ignore me when I tell you how I feel, what I need, or what my plans are. And then when you tromp all over my feelings or needs or plans, it pisses me off.

    I’m tired of feeling like Grumpy McGrumpface because you don’t know the person I am when I I know you inside and out.”

    The sad part? I’ve TOLD them I feel like this and it NEVER changes. Sigh.

    Heather’s last blog post..How About a List?

  47. Miss Britt says:

    Oh Heather, I’m sorry. :-(

  48. You are too goddamn sweet, you know that? You are just too sweet.

    maggie, dammit’s last blog post..two minute break

  49. Miss Britt says:

    Oh yeah. I get that A LOT. HA! :rolleyes:

  50. tori says:

    Don’t mind me, I am just lurking and reading your archives…sort of like a stalker, but not creepy. I just had to say that I totally feel this one. How nice it would be just once to feel heard by a certain person in my life. This post is great. Thank you.

  51. [...] we are unheard, we get louder.  If not in word, than in deed, and that’s where the real trouble [...]

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